ROMINE CLINCHES SECOND IHRA WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
SHREVEPORT, LA. -- ((Oct. 24, 1998)Reigning IHRA Top Fuel World Champion Paul Romine successfully defended his championship Saturday evening as he clinched the 1998 IHRA championship with a first round win at the rain-delayed IHRA World Finals in Shreveport, La. The title was Romine's second consecutive title with the CARQUEST Top Fuel dragster.
"I can't say enough about Clayton and the team," Romine said. "It's been an up-and-down season, but when it came time to produce, the CARQUEST team did its job and we defended our title. This championship means a lot to the team because we wanted to win it for CARQUEST and the Special Olympics."
Romine entered the World Finals a round behind Tommy Johnson, Jr. in the IHRA Snap-on point standings. In qualifying, Romine earned a huge break when Johnson, Jr. failed to qualify for the 8-car field. This put the championship hopes in the CARQUEST team's hands. All they needed was a first round win and the championship was theirs.
After eliminations were delayed one week because of weather, the CARQUEST team returned to Red River Raceway focused on a first round victory and they didn't disappoint. Romine recorded a 4.936/ 285.95 to defeat Novelli for the win. Romine lost in round two of the event.
"I'm just glad it's over," Romine said. "Having to wait a week and knowing our entire season rested on one round win, that was a lot to deal with, but we got the job done and I couldn't be happier."
Romine and the CARQUEST team will collect their championship trophy in January at the IHRA Banquet in Asheville, NC.
1998 IHRA SEASON REVIEW FOR PAUL ROMINE Race #1 IHRA Prolong Super Lubricants Winter Nationals DeSoto Memorial Dragway, Bradenton, FL March 27-29 Qualified 1st 4.869/278.37 (3 consecutive 4-second ET's in qualifying) Round 1 Wayne Bailey (.530 5.136/241.87) def. ROMINE (.476 5.679/234.19)
Race #2 IHRA Southern Nationals Darlington International Dragway, Darlington, SC May 1-3 Qualified 3rd 4.849/288.09 Round 1 ROMINE (.494 4.893/284.03) def. Danielle DePorter (.544 5.080/260.41) Round 2 ROMINE (.507 5.139/251.06) def. Danny Dunn (.501 6.244/152.19) Final Tommy Johnson Jr. (.509 4.941/288.83) def. ROMINE (.490 4.972/289.01)
Race #3 IHRA SUMMER NATIONALS presented by Parts Plus Cordova Dragway Park, Cordova, Ill. July 3-5 Qualified 2nd 4.918/285.83 Round 1 ROMINE (.566 4.926/278.75) def. Danny Dunn (.5015.075/289.32) Semi-final ROMINE (.501 4.903/286.86) def. David Bieneman (.733 5.044/281.13) Final Doug Herbert (.461 4.983/291.76) def. ROMINE (.508 5.281/240.98)
Race #4 IHRA CARQUEST Empire Nationals New York International Raceway Park, Leicester, NY July 10-12 Qualified 2nd 4.997/282.07 (first 4 at NYIRP) Round 1 ROMINE(.557 4.910/285.05) def. Bruce Litton (.470 5.251/273.39) Round 2 ROMINE (.522 4.998/282.90) def. Doug Herbert (.487 5.068/290.63) Final ROMINE (.9615.009/284.03) def. Tommy Johnson Jr. (broke)
Race #5 IHRA CARQUEST Northern Nationals Mid-Michigan Motorplex, Stanton, Mich. July 31 - Aug. 2 Qualified 3rd 4.794/288.21 Round 1 Tommy Johnson Jr. (.545 4.765/292.33) def. ROMINE (.507 4.772/297.68) Race #6 IHRA Prolong Super Lubricants World Nationals Norwalk Raceway Park, Norwalk, Ohio Aug. 27-30 Qualified 1st 4.720/296.54 Round 1 ROMINE(.560 7.421/91.42) def. Jack Ostrander (.580 10.567/85.71) Round 2 ROMINE (.484 4.818/283.73) def. Don Lampus (.506 4.855/296.44) Final Doug Herbert (.553 4.895/266.19) def. ROMINE(.482 12.356/48.29)
Race #7 IHRA North American Nationals New England Dragway, Epping, NH Sept. 11-13 Qualified 3rd 4.880/245.90 Round 1 Don Lampus (.497 4.833/302.69) def. ROMINE (.521 12.868/75.17)
Race #8 IHRA World Finals Red River Raceway, Shreveport, LA Oct. 16-18, rain-date Oct. 24 Qualified 4th 4.895/290.19 Round 1 -->ROMINE (.511 4.936/285.95) def. Luigi Novelli (.509 5.342/210.01) Round 2 -->Doug Herbert (.539 4.777/283.31) def. ROMINE (.503 6.741/123.35)